The Chinese Doctor Blew My Mind: On Healing Lyme Disease

Via Claudia Azula Altucher
on Oct 17, 2011
get elephant's newsletter

You don’t tell me what is wrong with you, I tell you. Said the doctor smiling and in a sweet voice.

That was new. After 46 days on antibiotics I was left in ruins, depleted of all energy and not even sure if healed from Lyme disease.

Dr. H. has a little shop in Manhattan filled with Chinese herbs he picks in China himself. He does not trust shipping.

Balancing Energies

My landlord recommended him. He said how he once could not walk because his right leg was acting up, and after 3 visits with Dr. H he was healed. I was sold. Wanted to meet him.  So about a week ago we ventured into Dr. H. office.  My first visit to NYC in ages.

The Visit

We started with the date of birth which he looked in an ancient book and told me, among other things, that my element is earth. I knew there had to be something behind the Blog being EarthYogi dot blogspot.

He took my pulse in the way the do it in Thailand or India, or China (not the American way).  He did not count anything but rather “felt” the serpent of my pulse with three fingers.  I read in a yoga book that it can indicate imbalances depending on which of the three fingers registers a higher or lower variation and on the quality of it.

He touched my hand and feet and pressed points.  Every point hurt. Badly.

He said things I did not know like (warning might be too much info) my pee was too yellow (which it was and I had blamed on vitamin C), that my energy was low and my body out of balance.  My kidneys and heart were giving me trouble. YES!

What about Lyme?  We asked.

And that is when he said something very wise that will definitely NOT go well with American doctors:

There is bacteria everywhere, people walk around with cancer cells every day, all the time, yet not everyone gets cancer.  A balanced body, a strong support system, does not allow bacteria to do anything.

I loan to be the female version of this

I thought about when I came back from Thailand 3 years ago.  I had spent the month at teacher training doing pranayama, asana, taking steam baths, infrared saunas, getting massages, swimming in the ocean, doing the internal cleansings almost every day (vaman, enemas, neti).

I was really healthy when I came back, it showed in the shinning of my eyes. Then of course came the punch of losing the job, home, re-invention of life, my father died. Some really good things came too.  But maybe the negative got to be a bit much.

When Dr. H. said that, I longed for health. For a balanced body.

He gave me about 6 different herbs. Some he makes, some he gets somewhere in the orient. all very exotic.  Some of them are little round pills I need to take in quantities of eight, three times a day.

They look pretty much like that, some of them at least

The first 3 days…

Were the worst 3 days of my life. I literally thought I was dying.

The transition from antibiotics to just herbs almost killed me, or so I thought, but I survived.  My energy went down, I was depressed and suicidal and on top of things I could not sleep or “medicate”.

The Scare

One day I got scared. I could not sleep more than 4 hours at all, exactly the opposite of what the antibiotics had done.

I wondered if I could be on “withdrawal” from pharma, so I called him. He never used that word. “Withdrawal”. Never. I told him I felt a pain that would move from my heart to my stomach, to my shoulders all day long. He listened.  He said I should give it a little more time.

Take some more of the sleeping herbs? No, just two as he had said on day one. Just more time.


But I cannot sleep!  Put your feet in hot water for 20 minutes before bed.

My Grandmother knew…

Feet in hot water before bed is what my grandmother used to do.

What practice? No asana no pranayama, not even reading! nothing.  The only focus is on healing.
I have, for the first time ever, done nothing but focus on being well.  Of course I do miss it and get jealous of all of you and your practices, but in a good way, the good jealousy.
I do take walks and stretch a little. But Primary Series plus intermediate to Laghu, as I knew it 8 weeks ago is gone.
I look at this video in awe, wonder who that is:
The one thing I have been practicing which you “could” call meditation, is being VERY aware of my body. What is happening. Where is it vibrating, how is my heart doing.
The punch line
Right before I was leaving he looked at me deep in thought and said:  “Don’t do things you do not want to do”.  It blew my mind. How did he know that for the first 40 years of my life I always tried to please everyone?


About Claudia Azula Altucher

Claudia Azula Altucher has studied yoga for a long time. Her only focus these past eight years has been on Ashtanga through which she studied at the Ashtanga Yoga Research Institute in Mysore, India (three study visits so far), and at Centered Yoga in Thailand (focus on practice, philosophy and pranayama). Currently she studies at Pure Yoga in NYC. She has taught yoga classes in both Spanish and English. She is also the Author of: 21 Things To Know Before Starting an Ashtanga Yoga Practice (you can get a free PDF at her blog). She writes daily at And you can follow her on Twitter:


22 Responses to “The Chinese Doctor Blew My Mind: On Healing Lyme Disease”

  1. Tanya Lee Markul says:

    Claudia, this gave me goose bumps. I sincerely hope you are healthy soon again soon – it sounds like you are well on your way. 🙂 🙂 Thank you for sharing this – it's so important. So much peace to you.

    Posting to Elephant Yoga on Facebook and Twitter.

    Tanya Lee Markul, Yoga Editor
    Join us! Like Elephant Yoga on Facebook
    Follow on Twitter

  2. Claudia says:

    Thank you Tanya, I really hope so too!!! I appreciate you posting to Elephant Yoga 🙂

    Hugs!!! Miss you!

  3. Claudia says:

    Tanya thank you, guess I made a new comment (below) instead of a reply…. Would you know why I am not able to share at Elephant Journal . com page? I posted but was deleted… 🙁

    I really hope to heal too! It has been 8 weeks now… intense…

  4. petrina says:

    hi claudia, i'm also a yogini, with lyme disease and babesiosis. i would love to meet dr. h. how do i find him?

  5. Carol Horton says:

    Claudia – So glad to hear that you've found someone so helpful. Sounds like he's offering some wise counsel along with the herbs – please do just back off what you feel that you're supposed to do (including Ashtanga yoga), and be well! xxoo

  6. Jen says:

    Chinese medicine is great and it works. I hope you feel better. But lets not fall into the trap of thinking that because it is from the "orient" it's "exotic". It's not other…….it's just medicine that works and honors life. Thank you.

  7. Claudia says:

    Thank you Bob, appreciate it!!! 🙂

  8. Claudia says:

    petrina, email me [email protected]. Do you live in NYC?

  9. Claudia says:

    Thank you Carol!!! I do think I am now doing what I love doing, but in the past I suffered from the nice girl syndrome… that is all changing now… and you are quite right that is good to reconsider feelings and check once in a while to see that we are doing what is alinged with spirit. Dont mean to put words in your mouth is how I interpret…. As per Ashtanga… I kind of miss it… but will think about it anyway!

  10. Claudia says:

    Oh, I hear you Jen, not falling anywhere, it is working. I dont care who is wrong or right or who things what, I just want to heal appreciate the good wishes…. now , me being a person of the Americas who has lived in South, Central and North America, all things from the Orient are exotic to me, I do not see anything wrong with the fact that it seems different and exotic… whatever works!

  11. Tanya Lee Markul says:

    Hello my sweet. I am not sure why that happened – perhaps only a click in the Ele matrix I hope. Is it working now?

  12. Tanya Lee Markul says:

    The thanks is mine! So much love to you 🙂

  13. Tanya Lee Markul says:

    Love. Love. Love.

    Just posted to "Popular Lately" on the Elephant Yoga homepage.

    Tanya Lee Markul, Yoga Editor
    Join us! Like Elephant Yoga on Facebook
    Follow on Twitter

  14. […] The Chinese Doctor Blew My Mind: On Healing Lyme Disease […]

  15. […] a quantum and Chinese medicine perspective, “you are what you eat” has very true meaning. Every particle in everything we eat […]

  16. Inessa says:

    Hi Claudia!

    Thank you very much for the article. It gives me hope as not very long ago I was diagnosed with Lyme disease.

    Im a very active person, a runner, a yogi. was going to get my Yoga teacher certification, but i had to stop intense practices because of my illness. I did two courses of antibiotics and so far the results coming back as lyme positive. So i started my research about alternate medicine and came across this article. I live in NYC and would really appreciate if you could tell me where to find this doctor and any advice regarding exercises while struggling with the disease would be very helpful.

    Thank you so much in advance!




    can you please share this Chinese herbal doctors name?

  18. Richard says:


    I hope that you are fully recovered now. I was bitten a couple of weeks ago and, looking at how much the red patch has spread, I’m thinking I might be in stage 1 of Lymes Disease. I really don’t want to take antibiotics. Do you remember the names of the herbs you were/are taking? If I can beat this thing naturally, I will be a happy man.



  19. Sifu Alex says:

    I have been diagnosed with full Lymes 3 times and now it's chronic. I've been suffering from chronic Lyme symptoms like headache, chills and fever for 8 years. After 9 doctors I did see 3 TCM doctors. They worked for a few years but the symptoms are back and I'm looking for a new TCM Doctor. Can you please give me his name and number? You can contact me through my email or website. Thank you.

  20. Christian Auger says:

    My wife was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis 5 years ago, now the diagnoses has changed to Lymes disease. We have used TCM for many years. Can you please email us contact information for Dr H.Thank you.

  21. Abe says:

    I've been suffering from chronic Lyme, Can you please email us contact information for Dr H.Thank you.